There are 172,000 books published every year in the US, and another 206,000 in the UK. Suffice to say, they do not all become best-sellers. But just because a book isn't popular, doesn't mean it didn't deserve your attention. The Guardian staff is trying to give unloved tomes a second chance by naming their favorite books of the past decade that no one but themselves read. It's a great concept, and a couple of these have caught my eye, including:
War Reporting for Cowards by Chris Ayres, published in 2005, is one of the funniest books I have ever been involved with – it's about the author's hapless time as an embedded reporter with the US Marines in Iraq. I think the reason it did not take off as it should was to do with the gap between commissioning it in 2003 and it being written and published two years later: by then the war had got so unpopular with the public that every book about it, brilliantly entertaining or not, was struggling. I hope in time it will become recognised as a classic.
The Guardian: The Decade's Best Unread Books